Climate and Sustainability| The Consumer as Climate Activist

Connie Roser-Renouf, Lucy Atkinson, Edward Maibach, Anthony Leiserowitz


Consumption of green products is growing rapidly in the United States. We assessed the extent to which this consumption is motivated by a desire to promote societal-level change in corporate practices that affect the climate, and posit a social–cognitive model in which people’s global warming beliefs and consumer activism beliefs predict their green purchasing goals, behavior, and opinion leadership. Using nationally representative survey data, we tested the model and found a good fit: Global warming and consumer activism beliefs predict people’s green purchasing goals, which in turn predict green purchases and opinion leadership. These results suggest that communication that creates concern about global warming and enhances beliefs about the power of consumer action is likely to stimulate green consumption.


consumer activism, climate change, efficacy, opinion leadership, involvement

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